George Onyejiuwa, Owerri
The Central Bank of Nigeria has said that it would create about ten million jobs in five years through strategic support for small scale farmers across the nation.
Its Director of Corporate Communications Isaac Okoroafor said that but for the timely intervention of the bank, the nation’s economy would have collapsed long ago.
He disclosed that the bank recovered over N6 billion in of excess charges on customers by commercial banks.
Okoroafor who stated this on Thursday at a customers sensitisation forum in Owerri , Imo state , said the Central Bank of Nigeria would create about ten million jobs in the next five years by providing strategic support to small scale farmers and the anchor companies that would buy agricultural produce from them.
According to him, “the CBN has set up a strategic plan to create ten million jobs in the next five years through the strategic financing to farmers of cassava, cocoa, maize, tomatoes, cotton, fisheries, poultry, oil palm among other agricultural primary agricultural produce cultivated in this country
Besides the financing, the CBN will also provide the farmers with high yielding seedlings and extension services to ensure that they succeed.”
He also disclosed that the apex bank will also provide financial support for anchor companies that will immediately purchase the primary agricultural produce for processing.
“The CBN is doing everything possible to support local farmers and anchor companies to ensure that the economy is expanded to create a value chain and our target is to create five million jobs in the next five years to reduce the banditry, kidnapping and other social vices being witnessed today.”
Okoroafor said that the intention of the Central Bank of Nigeria is to bring back the farm settlements with each section of the country enaging in the crop that had been the economic mainstay of the country before the discovery of crude oil.
“The CBN is desirous of returning the farm settlements back to the country. Nigeria used to be the largest exporter of oil palm oil but today we import the product. However, with the CBN coming to assist with finance, improved seedlings and support of anchor companies, farmers will produce more knowing that their produce will be immediately bought after harvesting at no loss to them”.
Also speaking, the Deputy Director, Consumer protection department, Mrs. Chinyere Obilor said CBN has recovered over N60 billion from commercial bank as excessive charges on customers.